Belgium's second offshore wind project moved a step forward when its developer, Evelop, part of the Dutch Econcern group, signed a connection agreement with grid operator Elia. The 330 MW Belwind project will be located at a water depth of between 20 and 35 metres on Bligh Bank, 46 kilometres from the Belgian coast. It will connect to the Elia transmission network at the 150 kV Blondeellaan substation in Zeebrugge. The EUR 900 million project will be built in two phases, each of 165 MW, and is expected to begin operating in 2010. Evelop and Elia have already reached agreement on the purchase of green certificates from Belwind, and also on co-financing for the underwater cable bringing power ashore. Elia is to provide EUR 25 million towards the cable and when the wind farm is operational, it will buy all certificates at the Belgian legally stipulated minimum price for a period of 20 years.
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